We’ve had the chance to drive some pretty special cars this year but few get as many eyeballs as the 2022 Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD. While sports cars suffer from the “don’t point or you’ll inflate their ego” treatment, we’ve found EVs – and especially this KIA EV6 in Matte Moonscape – get quite the opposite. They’re futuristic, relatively obtainable, and lack the stigma that comes with ownership of something like a bright blue Porsche with a swanneck wing.
After spending some time in the rear-wheel drive KIA EV6 earlier this year, it was about time we jumped into the AWD version to see if the addition of a motor on the front axle could add some much-needed connectivity on the road.
KIA EV6 GT-line AWD at a Glance
|High Point||Low Point||Verdict|
|Futuristic, packed with technology, and one of the best-looking EVs money can buy for the brand. The KIA EV6 GT-line AWD is the next halo car for the brand and if this is where their future is going, bring it on.||There’s a LOT going on in the interior, particularly in the buttons department. While you might learn to live with it, the steering wheel is a mess of buttons and it’s forever confusing. It looks the trick, but there’s no hiding the fact the glitz and glamour of the interior is only surface deep, it’s not built like the Germans. Yet.||We love everything about the KIA EV6 from a daily driving perspective. It doesn’t have much to offer in the soul department, but it more than makes up for it with modern technology. While there are far too many buttons, think of it as a learning curve that will never get boring and you’ll be right.|
Many are calling the KIA EV6 GT-line the next halo car for KIA. The twin-turbo V6 KIA Stinger did its best to leave a lasting impression of the ‘new’ KIA brand on Australian car buyers but it soon dwindled in sales and with the onslaught of hot hatches from its Korean cousin Hyundai, the fight between the two brands started to look a little lopsided.
That all changed once EVs became a viable option for new car buyers and instead of pulling at each other’s hair strings, the Korean brands decided they were better off tackling the onslaught of Chinese manufacturers together.
Hyundai and KIA created the E-GMP EV platform in partnership. All cars would share the same battery architecture, motors, and layout, with the difference between the cars all being down to the ride, handling, looks, and interior layout (minus display). We like to think of the Hyundai Ioniq 5, KIA EV6, and Genesis GV60 as the Avengers of the Korean car market.
|2022 Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD as Tested|
|Price (MSRP)||AUD$87,590 plus on-road costs|
|Colour of test car||Moonscape|
|Options||Matte paint – AUD$1000|
|Price as tested||AUD$88,590 plus on-road costs|
|Rivals||Tesla Model 3, Hyundai Ioniq 5, Polestar 2|
KIA EV6 GT-line AWD Battery and Charging
|Kia EV6 GT-line AWD Battery Specifications|
The battery size on the Kia EV6 is about average for most EVs today at 77.4kWh. This gives the EV6 GT-line AWD an AER range of around 484km, which is about 20km less than its rear-wheel-drive counterpart thanks to the extra energy used by the front motor.
The quoted WLTP range of the Kia EV6 is an impressive 506 km which is in the ballpark for what we recommend to EV buyers. We like to factor in around 150km of ‘head room’ for colder days where the efficiency of the electric motors and battery can almost cut your range in half.
|Kia EV6 GT-line AWD Charging Capabilities|
|AC Charge 10-100% with 11kW Charger||Approx. 7h 20m (230V / 16A)|
|DC Charge 10-80% with 50kW Charger||Approx. 73m|
|DC Charge 10-80% with 350kW Charger||Approx. 18m|
|Supported charging||400 V and 800 V (without additional adapters)|
We’ll say it again but the public charging infrastructure in Australia has a long way to go before we’d go out and recommend anyone live with an EV on the public network. Often it’s not for lack of chargers but maintenance of the higher output chargers that seem to be broken at least half the time in our testing.
That might be about to change with the inclusion of 120 rapid chargers being installed at Ampol petrol stations around the country in the coming months. These will deliver a maximum of 150kW and charge the EV6 from 10-80% in around 30-40 minutes. The sad news is that while the EV6 might be able to charge at 200kW+ (800-volts) there’s only a handful of these chargers in the country.
The solution then is to factor in a couple of thousand dollars to install a 7kw, 11kw, or 22kw charger in your garage or carport. If you live in an apartment, you’re probably out of luck on this one. Connect your Kia EV6 to a charger at home and you’ll be able to fill its 77.4kWh battery overnight (in just over 7hrs).
Related: Genesis X Speedium Coupe is Gorgeous
What’s the Interior Like on the Kia EV6 GT-Line?
If you think the exterior of the Kia EV6 is futuristic, just wait until the door handles pop out and you open the door. We actually let out a verbal gasp the first time we sat inside. The centre console seems to float in the middle of the interior, while the massive display arrangement invites the driver to get behind the wheel of the Kia spaceship.
Space is what’s instantly noticeable thanks to the flat floor. There’s room to put stuff absolutely everywhere and we particularly love the huge bin under the centre console for the driver and passenger to put belongings. We used it for small groceries, camera gear, and work bags on our daily commute.
Small inclusions such as the wireless phone charger with a rubber grip to hold it steady are excellent, as are the large cupholders and the textures used on the upper dashboard.
We could probably do without the sheer number of buttons used on the steering wheel, centre console, and door panel but the control panel that switches functions from HVAC to audio/satellite navigation is pure genius.
The seating follows suit and is very comfortable for long road trips and around town with the cloth holding you firmly on tighter corners. We never found ourselves uncomfortable with heated and cooled seats that are very effective at both. The cooling sensation is particularly nice on your back after coming back to the car after a session at the gym.
|2022 Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD Size|
|Boot volume||480L seats up / 1270L seats folded – rear|
Is the Infotainment System Good?
The aforementioned twin 12.3-inch screens that are large enough to grab anyone’s attention are our favourite aspects of the interior. We love the fact Kia hasn’t opted for a giant tablet slapped into the middle of the dashboard for cost-saving and design purposes. The system is a step down from BMW’s latest system that we loved on the BMW IX xDrive50 we tested earlier this year, however, the graphics and overall layout of the information are very good overall and effective.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both available but Android Auto suffers from a smaller screen application. The system worked faultlessly in our testing, as did the navigation system that pairs with the bright heads-up display to provide the driver with a pseudo augmented reality experience by illuminating arrows to point the driver in the right direction.
We love the single control panel that can be touch-button-switched from HVAC to audio/satellite navigation. It works well at cleaning up a lot of the buttons that would otherwise be physical, however, there are still too many buttons… we digress.
2022 Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD Performance
|2022 Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD Performance Figures|
|Motor||Dual permanent magnet synchronous|
|Drive type||All-wheel drive|
|Power to weight ratio||113.5kW/t|
|Tow rating||1600kg braked, 750kg unbraked|
How Does the Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD Drive?
We had the chance to drive the Kia EV6 GT-Line single motor earlier this year, however, we felt the front end of the vehicle was missing something… an electric motor. Tip the single motor into a long downhill corner, load up the front end, and it felt like the rear wasn’t talking to the front in the same language. It took about 20 minutes to feel the difference in the GT-line AWD.
The EV6 isn’t focused on performance per se but with drive sent to all four wheels through a single-speed transmission the car feels quick and the low centre of gravity means the composure through corners is inspiring for what is a heavy AWD car.
Kia’s Disconnector Actuator System means power can be moved between the rear wheels or all four wheels depending on the driving style. Lock the car into sports mode and the system will lock itself into AWD giving you maximum acceleration and propelling the Kia EV6 from 0-100km/h in 5.2 seconds. It’s brisk and the instant EV shove is always confidence-inspiring for overtakes and junctions.
The regenerative braking system can be toggled through different levels through the paddle shifters on the back of the steering wheel – from none to extreme – that allow for single pedal driving in its most extreme setting.
Your average suburban street is where the Kia EV6 lives and the ride is composed and comfortable around town. While the car is fitted with 20-inch wheels, there’s still plenty of space in the wheel arches to fit Continental 255/45 R20 105 H tires so you don’t have to stress too much about potholes and excessive gutter rash. The local team went to great lengths to deliver a local suspension tune for the EV6 and the results show a compliant ride over uneven roads that range from smooth tarmac to pitted concrete found on some of our highways.
Things to Consider When Buying the Kia EV6
How Much Does the Kia EV6 Cost?
The Kia EV6 recently received a AUD$4600 price hike to add to its two-year wait time. This means the base price starts from AUD$72,590 plus on-road costs (up from AUD$67,590) for the base Air RWD to AUD$87,590 plus on-road costs (up from AUD$82,990) for the flagship GT-Line AWD as we tested here. These prices are not ‘price protected’ meaning if you wait a year for the EV6 and the price goes up, you’re paying the new price, or cancel your order and have your deposit refunded.
“An increase in costs globally and locally, such as raw materials, production and logistical costs, has resulted in an adjustment to the local recommended retail price of the EV6 range,” Kia Australia said in a statement.
How Long is the Warranty?
The Kia EV6 comes with a 7-year/unlimited-kilometre warranty that’s fully transferrable alongside the brand’s ‘high voltage’ component warrant that lasts seven-year/150,000km whichever comes first. This also includes 12 months of complimentary Roadside Assistance that can be extended to 8 years by returning your vehicle to an authorised Kia dealer for each of its scheduled services.
How Much Does it Cost to Service?
Speaking of servicing, the Kia EV6 can be prepaid at the time of purchase and is available in three packages.
- 3 years for $594.
- 5 years for $1089.
- 7 years for $1584.
If you’re looking to maintain your roadside assistance, the price of servicing averages out to about $226 per annum on a seven-year plan.
Is the Kia EV6 Safe?
The Kia EV6 received a 5-star ANCAP rating in February 2022. The overall adult occupant score was 34.48 out of 38 and includes a score of 7.98 out of 8 for full-width frontal, 6 out of 6 for pole oblique and 2.76 out of 3 for whiplash (front). The child overall occupant score was 42.96 out of 49, losing marks for on-board features where it scored 8.00 out of 13.
Thanks to the sheer amount of safety technology packed into the EV6 it scored an impression of 14.17 out of 16 for safety assist systems. More information on the ANCAP safety score of the car can be found here.
Man of Many’s Verdict on the 2022 Kia EV6
The Kia EV6 delivers one of the best all-around family car packages under $100,000 AUD. It leaves very few boxes unchecked on its way to delivering one of the best value-for-money EV offerings on the market.
They might be at different ends of the price spectrum, but the EV6 is as much a halo car for Kia as the BMW iX is for the German luxury manufacturer and when push comes to shove both brands have nailed the brief. These EVs might forgo a little character on their way to becoming technological time machines, but it hardly subtracts from the overall product. Comfortable to live with every day, if you can lock in a test drive and get yourself down on that two-year waiting list, we recommend you do it right away.